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ServiceNow CEO Bill McDermott: ‘We’re In A Market Of One’

Joseph F. Kovar

McDermott says his company is the workflow automation market leader, one that is on its way to becoming a $15 billion SaaS powerhouse by building a “platform of platforms.”

Do you see any change in partner dynamics going forward? Either the way partners are doing business with ServiceNow or the way partners are taking ServiceNow to their customers?

What’s happening out there is customers feel that they have invested billions in their IT and their applications. But what they’re disillusioned by is only 25 percent of them have gotten positive ROI on those investments. And as they think about ServiceNow and the ecosystem thinks about ServiceNow, we’re the company that enables all of those previous investments to be automated, where the customer can now wring the value out of those platforms that they bargained for, and yet they can have one automation platform that spans the enterprise at a consumer-grade level on mobile that gives people incredible services.

So the partner network is saying, ‘Hey, I am going to make the customer happy. I can still keep all the great practices I have with all the other companies that I developed in the 20th century, but I can bring a new step function of productivity, a new form factor of consumer great experiences with all of my customers without harming any of the prior relationships.’ And that’s what ServiceNow enables. You know, 20 percent of productivity in every enterprise goes down the drain with swivel chair losses and people toggling between application sets on computers, smartphones and devices. With ServiceNow, all that goes away. All that turns into instant activity and instant action.

What are some things that you would like to see your channel partners do to be more in tune with the vision you have for them?

I really want them to recognize it’s all about people. Talent is really the difference between thriving and surviving in the 21st century. And we have to close the global skills gap because the closure of that gap is an $11.5 trillion market opportunity by 2028, according to the World Economic Forum. So we have to be attracting and keeping the best talent. But also we need our partners to be an extension of our talent pool because they do 90 percent of the implementations out there, and they have to drive customer satisfaction and innovation and scale. So we’re going to have to do lots of training, lots of skill development, lots of recruiting, and lots of work with our customers to make sure that they are 100 percent satisfied and referenceable and scalable at all times. So really, the No. 1 thing is focus on people, develop that talent, and make sure it’s extraordinarily well prepared for the challenges that our customers are going to face in this century and beyond.

 
Joseph F. Kovar

Joseph F. Kovar is a senior editor and reporter for the storage and the non-tech-focused channel beats for CRN. He keeps readers abreast of the latest issues related to such areas as data life-cycle, business continuity and disaster recovery, and data centers, along with related services and software, while highlighting some of the key trends that impact the IT channel overall. He can be reached at jkovar@thechannelcompany.com.

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